He’s wrong and I’m right and that doesn’t make me feel any better
About what I’m doing as I get out of the cab, thinking:
“This isn’t a job you can do if you’re the kind of person who needs friends”
Which is what the man who hired me told me when I started
I walk through the employee parking just as if I belonged there
Red 1990 Chrysler LeBaron, soft top convertible, corner of the lot
Farthest corner from the entrance as if that would stop me
But a guy in his situation is hoping against hope
Which is exactly the kind of thought I can’t be thinking right now
Thinking about him as a person he’s supposed to be just a file to me
I get the keys out of my pocket, brand new and shiny and for the very first time
I’m hoping that codes are wrong and they don’t work
But the door opens and I slide inside the car smells like stale cigarettes and fast food
Nobody yells at me as I try the ignition and the car turns over, running good
I find reverse by feel with my eyes on the side mirror
Back it up and pull out, no one in sight, no one looking at me
Pull out of the lot, past the post they probably padlock a chain to at night
To the corner and the light’s green and through the intersection
Exhaling that breath that I never know I’m holding
Right on a street with some Spanish name
Right again onto 22nd street pulling out onto the left hand lane
Carefully, since I don’t want to get pulled over even though I’ve got
All the relevant paperwork in a blue plastic folder
Sitting next to me on the seat and I look down to check that
I didn’t leave it in the lot or on top of the car and that
Is when I see a hardcover book, some stupid Star Trek thing,
On the seat beside me with a blue striped utility bill stuck in it as a bookmark
And I think it was at that exact moment that I realized,
“I can’t do this anymore” wasn’t just a refrain in my head
But the God’s honest truth, nothing less
When I got to the lot I put the keys to the LeBaron on the desk
And put the other keys next to them
The padlock for the yard, the office door, the key to the flatbed
That I never learned to drive although I had meant to
And the man who hired me wasn’t at all surprised he said,
“I knew you wouldn’t last long” which at that moment
Coming from that man I took as a compliment.


About MishaBurnett

I am the author of "Catskinner's Book", a science fiction novel available on Amazon Kindle.
This entry was posted in Poetry, Who I am and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Replevin

  1. Pingback: Replevin | mishaburnett

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